Portugal has received a formal demand by the European Commission to change its internal gambling laws or face prosecution by the European Court of Justice. The Commission was referring to Portugal’s practice of taxing winnings that originated from offshore lotteries, yet kept national lottery winnings non taxable.
In its letter to the Portuguese authorities, the European Commission said that the government’s policy could not possibly be part of a strategy to curb gambling habits, as the country claims to be doing by taxing offshore lotteries, because it still allowed national lotteries to run without any problem.
This is not the first European country that has received an official warning by the European Commission. Spain’s case has even reached the European Court of Justice over its long standing discriminatory policy against offshore lottery and sports betting winnings.